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June Training: Building Fitness

June Training: Building Fitness

Last month was all about getting my mileage up for marathon training. t didn’t come easy either. Together with the heat, I’ve been much more tired. I haven’t run this “high” of mileage in a while. I am enjoying the process and training. Somedays are harder than others but I’m excited to have a goal to work towards.

June was a decent month of training and my best race was the first weekend of the month at the Scott Coffee 8k or the She Power Half Marathon.

The rest of the month wasn’t bad, but there was minimal excitement.

Total Miles: About 220
Longest Run: 16.8 miles
Shortest Run: 2 miles
Range of Paces: 6:20-11:12-untimed
Workouts: 4
Rest Days: 3 complete (several days I only swam)
Swimming: 7X (3000 meters each)

Races:
Scott Coffee 8k (33:03)
She Power Half (1:29.27)
Red Bank Classic 5k Recap
Bungalow Beach 5 Miler (34:14)
Pineland Striders 10k

Thoughts:

As I up my mileage, I’m not surprised I’m more tired and my racing times are getting slower.  I know my body is adjusting to multiple things including the increase of mileage as well as heat. I’ve run more personal worsts then bests in the last year but that’s okay.

I’m happy with how my running is going for where I’m at right now. I’ve gotten better about comparing myself to previous fitness levels. I’m just plugging along in the heat.

There wasn’t anything too exciting this month, although winning the Indianapolis Half was fun.

Next Month:

Next month is starting the nitty gritty of marathon training. The plan is to get a 20 miler in the last week of July which scares me.  I’ve run 20 miles before but never in the middle of the summer.

Blog Posts From the Month: 

Running Podcasts to Keep you Entertained

Does Collagen Help Post Workout Recovery?

Shoe Reviews:

Hoka Carbon X Shoe Review

Topo Fli-Lyte 3 Shoe Review

Mizuno Waveknit R2 Shoe Review

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. This week I talked about dealing with heat and humidity. PLUS AN ENTIRE OUTFIT GIVEAWAY FROM RUNNERS LOVE YOGA. 

In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. There are often giveaways as well as discount codes.

Questions for you:

How was your month of training?

What was your best run? 

 

 

 

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Training: Workouts and 10ks

Training: Workouts and 10ks

Is it July 1st already? It’s hard to believe that half of the year is gone. 

Anyway, last week went relatively better than the week before. I still had hiccups in training, but what is marathon training without that?

Monday: Easy 60 minutes
Tuesday: Easy 60 minutes
Wednesday: AM: 6X800s with 800 jog rest
PM: 5 Miles easy (Total mileage for the day 13)
Thursday: Swim 2 miles
Friday: Easy 60 minutes
Saturday: Pineland Striders 10k (44:04) Total mileage 10
Sunday: 15 Miles easy

Week 1: Hello Humidity

Week 2: Half Marathons and Workouts 57 mpw

Week 3: Travel and More Travel 53 MPW

Week 4: Training: Beach Runs and Long Runs 52 MPW

Week 5: 57.5 


Thoughts:

Training wise, I’m happy with how the week went. On Instagram, I mentioned that swimming 1-2X per week was my balance right now. Trying to cram in a third day, felt forced and I don’t want to burn out of it. I want to swim because I want to, not because I have to.

Workout Wednesday: 6X800 averaging 6:30 pace

I was happy to get this in. It was a jam-packed day between dropping my husband off for a deployment and then running.  Workout wise, I felt good. Originally I wanted to do these on the track, but there wasn’t enough time to get to one, so I settled for the road.

Pineland Striders 10k: 44:o4

It’s been years since I’ve done this race (I think since 2014 or 2015).  The last time I ran a 41: XX and I thought it was my slowest yet! On Saturday, we had the highest dew point yet (74). It was hot and humid, and my body did not respond well to the weather. I ran as hard as I could for the day. I’m happy with my effort for the race.  As I begin building mileage, I can feel it in my legs, and racing has gotten increasingly harder.

Long Run: 15 Miles

This was supposed to be a moderate effort, but it ultimately became an easy run, and I struggled through the heat. Looking back, I was hydrated but probably not enough. Around mile 8, I felt as though I hit a wall. Unfortunately, I was at the furthest spot from my house and (besides getting a ride), running back was the easiest way. So after taking a few mins to cool off and hydrating (I also keep a form of payment on my run), I got back out and finished. Was it my best run ever? No. Did it humble me? Yes.

Next Week I’ll do a Fourth of July Race and try a more productive long run.

Posts from the Week:

Hoka Carbon X Shoe Review

Does Collagen Help Post Workout Recovery?

Bungalow Beach 5 Miler (34:14)

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. This week I talked about dealing with heat and humidity. PLUS AN ENTIRE OUTFIT GIVEAWAY FROM RUNNERS LOVE YOGA. 

In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. There are often giveaways as well as discount codes.

Questions for you:

What is something you’ve burned out with before? While I have running, I stopped swimming competitively in 2011 and never looked back.

Does Collagen Help Post Workout Recovery?

Does Collagen Help Post Workout Recovery?

As many people know, I’m a Vital Proteins Ambassador and have been using Vital Proteins Collagen for over a year now.

Each month, Vital Proteins sends me products to try, and I share my favorites or answer questions people have.

I’ve already been using Vital Proteins for over a year, and I find I genuinely recover faster and feel better than if I don’t.  Usually, I have one serving twice a day.

Since this is primarily, a “workout blog,” many people have asked how it helps with recovery.

Vital proteins collagen

What Makes Collagen Peptides Different?

Vital Protein Collagen Peptides have the added benefit of providing 18 g of collagen protein.  I’ve personally found my body recovers much better when I have protein after a run or workout.

Why Take Collagen?

Until I learned more about collagen, I had no idea it was the second most abundant substance in the human body. (after water).

Collagen is found everywhere in the body. The purpose is to provide the body with strength, structure, and elasticity.

With the natural process of aging, our bodies become less efficient, producing collagen.  This leads to slower workout recovery time. By adding collagen, you can help speed up the process.

One of the essential jobs of collagen is to keep our bones and connective tissue in optimal working conditions. For runners and people that work out, this is imperative. Like rest, you cannot train hard without recovering hard.

How Can Collagen Help Running Performance? 

New research shows collagen can help decrease joint pain often associated with high impact exercise.

Long-term strenuous exercise, like running, leads to collagen degradation in the body. We naturally lose collagen as we age but running and other high impact sports can quicken this.  It’s not an overnight occurrence, and the degradation of collagen is a slow process.  It usually takes years.  Like a stress fracture, it takes time and isn’t an issue that just ‘pops up”.  That is why anyone running for years may have the same collagen issues.

Collagens Promotes a Healthy Response to Natural Inflammation:

Running stresses your body, which causes inflammation. Taking Collagen or any protein directly after a workout helps to promote inflammation and speed up the repair of connective tissues that are damaged.  I feel and recover better on days I do have collagen within 30 minutes of working out.

 

Promoting Joint Health:

In the running world, it’s not uncommon to hear runners and athletes talk about “bone on bone.”  This means they’ve lost the cartilage in their knees.  Losing all of the cartilage in your knees is from years of wear and tear on your body and joints.

How does Collagen Help Joints?
  • Increases lubrication around joints to make more mobile
  • Helps to increase bone density (A BIG ONE FOR RUNNERS!)
  • Reduces inflammation around joints and improves healing of connective tissues

Which Collagen Products are Best for Recovery?

While products like “the beauty glow,” have collagen and protein, they aren’t the best if your goal is to recover faster.

A Few of the Best Products for Recovery are:

The Original Collagen Peptides:

The Orginal Collagen Peptides are unflavored and can be added to anything. The collagen peptides are digested and absorbed by the body quickly for maximum benefits. Besides helping recover, they also help improve joints and ligaments, and tendon health. Of any collagen product, they are the most versatile and can be added into almost anything with no extra flavor, including hot or cold liquids, coffee, smoothies, and baked goods.

Bone Broth:

Bone broth was one of the first products I started taking from Vital Proteins. Bone broth is filled with amino acids.  These amino acids prevent the breakdown of muscle tissue, repair leaky gut, improve sleep quality, and help regenerate cartilage.  Important for runners, bone broth also contains calcium, magnesium, and potassium.

Collagen Whey:

This is my favorite product, and I try and have a serving most days. In addition to the collagen, the whey contains 26g of Protein, 5,105mg of BCAA.  It supports recovery and mixes well into smoothies.

Vital proteins collagen

Collagen Water:

It’s one of the newer products, and I wrote about Collagen Water last month. I like how many different flavors there are, plus it’s portable. If I’m running from somewhere other than my house, it’s easy and packed.

Vital Proteins Collagen water

In summary, I’ve found I’ve recovered faster and stronger after hard workouts by taking Collagen. Thank you Vital Proteins for allowing me to continue to be an ambassador.

Questions for you:

What do you eat or drink after working out? 

Have you tried collagen before? 

 

 

Running Podcasts to Keep you Entertained

Running Podcasts to Keep you Entertained

Over 16 months ago, I blogged about podcasts that keep me entertained.  Since then, some have come and gone. The podcast world has only gotten bigger since early 2018.

I’m by no means an expert (and you will not see a LOLZ Podcasts anytime soon) but here is an updated list of podcasts I’ve been listening to.  I’ve listened to at least an episode of each podcast, but not every single episode of everyone.

For me, I listen to podcasts when I’m working or even cleaning. I struggle with listening when I’m running because I can’t focus and run. I use wireless Aftershokz headphones which I wrote a review about here. 

Running Podcasts to Keep You Entertained

Here is a bigger list of more Running Podcasts:

1609 Podcast (focuses on all things running)
Ali on the Run (funny, runners of all skills)
BibRave (race related and everything running related)
Citius Mag Podcast (Interviews elite and professional athletes)
C Tolle Run (informative, Carrie was an Olympian herself)
Diz Runs Radio (Interviews everyone from the first runner to the last, the trail runner to the marathoner.)
Endurance Planet (performance and health-based running advice)
For the Long Run Pod (Informative with guests not on other shows)
I’ll Have Another (funny, informative, runners of all levels)
Keeping up with Kelsey Cansler (informative and fitness related)
Man Bun Run (informative, interviewing many ultra runners)
Marathon Training Academy (everything marathon-related)
Marathon Talk (Based out of the UK, everything running related)
Morning Shakeout (interviews with well-known runners and people of the sport)
No Meat Athlete Radio (200+ episodes of plant-based information and interviews
Ordinary Marathon (Running based and interviews a bit of everything)
Strength Running (Running and Coaching Tips. Nothing is time sensitive so you can listen in whatever order)
Rambling Runner (everything running related)
Rich Roll (a plant-based podcast about running)
Running for Real by Tina Muir (informative and about everything for runners including nutrition and well being)
Running Rogue(training tips and information on the current running world)
Trail Runner Nation(All things trail running)
The Extra Mile Podcast (Follows runners training for anything from a 5k-full marathon).
Ultra Runner Pod (all things ultra running!)

Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. This weeks newsletter is my favorite and all about coaching and if it’s right for you!

Questions for you:

Do you have a favorite podcast? What is it?

What’s your favorite podcast episode? 

Swimming for Runners

Swimming for Runners

If you have followed my blog since it’s birth in 2010, you may remember I was a swimmer. Not just a swimmer, but I swam competitively for college.  After college, I was done. Swimming is a hard sport and to improve at the college level, and you are usually in the pool anywhere between 2-4 hours a day. After college, I had no interest in staring at a black line.  I was burned out.

Truthfully, I didn’t think I would ever reach a point that I WANTED to swim again. I’ on and off in the last decade, but nothing competitive and usually not unless I was injured. This is the first time I’ve realized…hey, swimming isn’t “too bad.”

I’m always thankful that I learned to swim at a very early age because it’s not as easy as an adult. I’ve taught swim lessons before and learning when you are older is much more difficult, although not impossible. I’ve taught the mommy and ve me kids classes, coached swim team, and once showed an 80-year-old woman how to swim.

So if you are a runner, or someone wanting to benefit from swimming…what should you do?

First Get the Right Equipment:

Like running, swimming that expensive (minus the pool). You need a swimsuit (make sure it doesn’t move when you swim), swim cap, and goggles.  There are a couple of pieces that are a bonus such as a kickboard or pull buoy.

The goggles I used almost exclusively through college are the Speedo Vanquisher. 

They aren’t designed for swimming in open water, but they are great the pool and minimally fog up. I used them for a decade and never had any issues.

Many people asked about swim caps.  Why use a swim cap? Swim cap allows you to stay more streamlined as well as protects your hair. It might seem silly to wear, but it’s the swimmers’ norm to make swimming a lot easier and keep your hair in better condition. There are all different kinds. Latex is the cheapest and stays put on your head. If you use gel or hair product, this is usually the cap I recommend. Silicone is a lot more gentle on the hair and doesn’t rip hair out, but it will slide off and won’t stay put if you use hair product.

Pool Running:

Pool running is just how it sounds; you run but in the pool. There is more to it, though.

Since your feet don’t touch the bottom of the pool, there is no impact. This means it’s a good option if you are injured with a stress injury. It’s easier to pick up if you haven’t spent much time in the pool.

The funny thing about pool running is that it doesn’t resemble actual running. The point of it is to get your heart rate up. Just always keep moving! Pool running (versus swimming laps) is what is going to be most beneficial to runners. We don’t horizontal run (LOL if you get it), so while swimming laps might be more enjoyable, pool running is what will help actual running and build fitness and maintain fitness for running.

Use a pool belt when pool running. It will help with proper form. Without a pool belt, your focus changes from form and jogging to treading and staying above the surface.

I like this video with Jeff Galloway. He teaches exactly how to pool run. You want to get a bigger range of motion than you would in land running and just keep moving.

Here are a few workouts.  Keep in mind, you will only benefit by putting the effort in, and no one can do that for you. You can half-ass pool running and float there, but you won’t get a workout in. You can text while on the elliptical, that is different than putting the effort in and getting your heart rate up.

30 Minute Workout:
5 minutes easy jog
10X 2 minutes alternating hard, easy. Focusing on getting your heart rate up.
5 minutes easy jog

Workout 2: 30ish minutes
5 minutes Easy
Cut the pool in half so you are jogging back and forth on the deep end side (or where you can’t touch the bottom)
10X one side. Sprint as hard as you can to one side, stop at the wall and jog back. Repeat 10X. I did this one time during college when I was injured (and slowly increased reps and it kept me in shape. Ultimately, I ran my fastest cross county time after being injured for 2 months).

The point is to get your heart rate up.

Swimming Laps:

As a “retired swimmer,” I am just more prone to want to swim laps. As I add swimming back into my routine, that’s all I’ve been doing right now.

When I swam competitively and ran competitively, I didn’t find (and still don’t) swimming shape to translate into running shape. You can swim as much as you want, but chances are it won’t translate into running your fastest times. Your overall fitness will be great, but the specific movements and cardio don’t translate.  You can also run as much as you want, but might not find yourself a great swimmer. This article about, Olympian Micheal Phelps, shows that the specific fitness might not always translate.

How do you Start Swimming Laps?

My biggest advice to anyone just getting started is to start small. You don’t have to swim 1000 meters to get a good workout.

Like running, make it a goal to swim X meters, stop, regroup, and keep going. Most pools are usually 25 meters or 25 yards. Make it your goal to swim to the end, take a break, swim back, and repeat. Once you are more confident, you can say: swim to the other side, rest 30 seconds, repeat, and keep going.

Any swimmer will tell you, elite level swimmers don’t just get in the pool for 2 hours and get out. They do dozens of drills, sets, and intervals. In fact, realistically that’s what swim practices are. In the 15 years of swimming, I had one practice where our coach told us just to get in and swim. Honestly, it was awful!

A few workouts you can do:

Leg Recovery:
Need: Pull Buoy
Warmup: Swim 200 yards.
Set: 5X200 yard pulls with 2 minutes in between. Start off easy, and build to a faster pace.
Cooldown: 200 yards easy cooldown.
Total: 1400 yards

Kick Set:
Need: Kickboard
Warmup: 200 yards
Set: 4X25 yard kick. Using the kickboard, kick as hard as you can. Rest for 1 minute between.
50 Yards easy. Use this to flush out your legs, take your time.
4X25 yard kick: Kick as hard as you can. Rest for one minute in between.
50 Yards easy
4X25 yard kick. Alternate hard, easy, hard, easy. Take a minimal break as necessary, ideally working towards no break.
50 yards easy
50-yard kick as hard as you can. Take minimal breaks as needed, ideally working towards no break.
50 yards easy
2X25 yard kick. As hard as you have left. Take 1-minute break between but this should be all out, and your legs should burn.
Cooldown: 200 yards
Total: 1000

Swim Set:
Warmup: 200 yards
4×50 Freestyle. Your 5k effort. It should feel hard, but not like you are gassed out. Rest 2 minutes between each.
1X100 easy, “recovery.”
2×100 Freestyle. Moderate effort. This should feel like a half marathon, tough but controlled. Rest for 2 minutes between.
1×100 Easy, “recovery.”
4×25 Fast. Your hardest effort. This should feel like a mile sprint. Rest 1 minute between
1×100 Easy, recovery.
4×25 Fast. Your hardest effort. Rest 1 minute between.
Cooldown: 200 yards
Total: 1300

Just keep in mind, you have to do workouts that you enjoy. If swimming doesn’t click for you, that’s okay. I appreciate how enjoyable it’s been for me and a nice break from the outside world. You get lost in your own thoughts when you are submerged in the water for an hour.

 Finally, have you subscribed to the LOLZletter? It’s a free newsletter that comes out each Monday. This week I talked about rest days and cross training.  In the newsletter, I share running industry trends and things relevant to the sport. There are often giveaways as well as discount codes.

Questions for you:

Have a question about swimming, ask!

Do you like getting in the pool? 

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